TROUBLESHOOTING

PRINTING PROBLEMS?

Strings, under extrusion, gap in top layers, inconsistent infill, curling perimeters, … They tend to be some of the most frequent problems we encounter when printing flexible filaments. Know which are the most common and discover how to solve them to get the best quality in your 3D prints.

STRINGS

When we print with elastic filaments, the first impression we receive is the quantity of threads/strings that nozzle leaves in travelling movements, this issue is due to the high melt flow index that TPEs materials presents. But don´t worry there are several solutions to mitigate this issue.

  1. Increase the retraction speed of your extruder as much as possible. exam. 80-160mm/s
  2. Increase the retraction distance in increments of 0.5mm. exam. 4.5-7mm
  3. Increase the travelling speed as much as possible without losing steps. Exam. 160-180 mm/s
  4. Decrease the temperature as minimum as possible without clog it. 

STRINGS

UNDER EXTRUSION

Sometimes we can see that extrusión lines are inconsistents, irregular or poor, the problem is due to under extrusion issue, it can be solved adjusting the following parameters:

  1. Increase the temperature of the hotend with increments of 3-5ºC.
  2. Increase the pressure on the filament in the extruder feeder, sometimes with low pressure the filament slips into the drive gear and causes irregular and low extrusion flow rate.
  3. Revise the nozzle maybe is partial clogged mainly when you change from a rigid material like ABS, PETG, increase the temperature up to 260ºC and feed filament until you see the material flowing clean and fast.
  4. Increase the extrusion flow or extrusion multiplier in increments of 5%.  

UNDER EXTRUSION

GAP IN TOP LAYERS

Can be possible that our prints look great but we found that there are gaps or bumps in the top layers, this issue can be easily solve tweaking the following parameters.

  1. Increase the number of top layers, the minimum recommended are 4 layers can be increase up to 6 or 7.
  2. Increase the infill percentage, sometime with low %infill the material ca not close the top layers. Minimum recommended 12%
  3. Decrease the hotend temperature, when the material is too hot due to the high flow index it cannot cover top layers because it falls quickly without doing properly bridges.
  4. Increase the layer fan temperature up to 100%.

GAP IN TOP LAYERS

INCONSISTENT INFILL

Sometimes we find that we have a good finished perimeter but inconsistent infill, we can solve this issue with the following tweaks:

  1. Reduce the speed of infills up to the same as perimeters.
  2. Increase the temperature in increments of 5ºC up to the optimum extrusion flow.
  3. Increase the pressure in the extruder idler arm.
  4. Increase the extrusion flow or extrusion multiplier.

INCONSISTENT INFILL

CURLING PERIMETERS

When our machines are printing a part with high overhang angle, It can be possible that the external perimeters curls up causing a bad appearance in surface finishing, we can solve this issue in the following way:

  1. Decrease the perimeters speed up to 15-20 mm/s
  2. Increase the layer fan speed to 100%.
  3. Decrease the hotend temperature in intervals of 5ºC.

CURLING PERIMETERS

UNBOUNDED PERIMETERS

Sometimes we can see that the external perimeters of our printed part are unbounded, let´s solve it tweaking:

  1. Decrease the perimeters speed up to 15-20 mm/s
  2. Increase the temperature in increments of 5ºC
  3. In the slicer software we can set up the nozzle diameter 0.05mm less than our real nozzle diameter, for example, 0.4 NOZZLE =0.35MM NOZZLE (SLICER SOFTWARE)
  4. Revise the nozzle maybe is partial clogged, mainly when you change from a rigid material like ABS, PETG, increase the temperature up to 260ºC and feed filament until you see the material flowing clean and fast.

UNBOUNDED PERIMETERS

Now that you have all the information, what are you waiting for to print with flexible filaments?

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